LTC insurance might not save on Medicaid costs, review finds

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It is too early to determine if the Long-Term Care Partnership Program, a long-term care insurance initiative in four states, has yielded any savings to Medicaid, researchers said Tuesday.

Their 10-year review, which was funded by the Retirement Security Project and supported by Pew Charitable Trusts, also reported that the Partnership has so far fallen short of reaching its target audience. While it was intended to attract people who would not otherwise buy long-term care insurance to purchase policies, and therefore produce savings to Medicaid, it has so far attracted upper middle class individuals.

Other findings of the brief: Despite the development of products with improved consumer protections, overall demand for long-term care insurance remains low. However, the brief said the Partnership has had a positive effect on the development of improved consumer protections in the long-term care insurance marketplace.

California, New York, Indiana and Connecticut implement the program. Congress is now debating whether to allow other states to participate and make modifications to the Partnership. The program was started to examine whether combining public and private resources would help balance the financing of long-term care.